Seven of the eight representatives of ethnic minorities in the Croatian parliament on Wednesday signed statements of support for Social Democratic Party (SDP) leader Zoran Milanovic to form a new government.

The only minority MP who did not give her support to the SDP's Croatia Is Growing coalition was Ermina Lekaj Prljaskaj, who represents the Albanian minority.

"We agreed to give our support to the Croatia Is Growing coalition and to Zoran Milanovic to become prime minister-designate," Roma minority deputy Veljko Kajtazi told the press after a meeting of the political group that represents the ethnic minorities in the Croatian parliament.

Kajtazi confirmed that the Albanian minority deputy had not attended the meeting. "She was invited, you should ask her why she didn't turn up," he added.

He said that the statements of support signed by the seven MPs would be added to the others that support the centre-left coalition.

Lekaj Prljaskaj was unavailable for comment. 

Minority MPs said that they saw her move as a confirmation that she did not want to be a member of their parliamentary group.

The SDP-led coalition gained 56 seats in the November 8 election for the 151-seat parliament and currently enjoys the support of 67 elected MPs, including three from the Istrian Democratic Party, one from the Reformists and seven representatives of the ethnic minorities.

The support of at least 76 elected MPs is required to obtain the mandate to form the new government.

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